Book Review:Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella

One of my 2017 bookish resolutions is to read more books that deal with mental illness, particularly those targeted at younger readers. Nowadays more and more individuals open up about their struggles with mental illness, but it`s still something considered tabu in many cultures. The main problem is that some people are quick to judge, without having a full understanding of what goes on. While medical research and true stories can be a bit of a bore, fiction novels are a great way of familiarising yourself with mental illness. There are so many wonderful stories out there and I am pleased to see that many YA authors make these crucial issues a priority. With this being said, "Finding Audrey" was a real disappointment.

Audrey Turner is a fourteen-year-old girl who suffers from a severe anxiety disorder. After a bullying incident at school, she is afraid to leave her house and she has a hard time talking with people. Even in the house, she wears a pair of dark glasses, to shield her from the world. At one point she meets Linus, her brother`s friend with whom she soon develops a connection. And that`s the part where everything went downhill and the story became a walking cliche. It pisses me off because this book had a promising start and I absolutely loved the parts where Audrey describes how anxiety affected her life.

Normally I like to talk about the plot and the good parts, but I will make this post an exception. Be ready for a massive rant. Before getting annoyed by the worst case of insta love, I had my fair share of problems with the way the parents were represented in this book. You have the neurotic, "Daily Mail" obsessed mum, and the absent dad that agrees with everything his wife says. I found the mum one of the most infuriating characters and her attitude was a complete joke. I know some of her scenes were supposed to be funny, but for me, they were a wasted opportunity.

As the main character, Audrey was a bit bland and it was hard to connect with her. I think that the only person that I truly liked was Frank, her League of Conquerors fixated brother. He reminded me a lot of my cousin, whose whole life revolves around LOL. I absolutely loved Frank`s witty comments and his little interactions with Audrey. The little brother wasn`t bad either.

Now moving on to my biggest issue with this book, which is Audrey`s relationship with Linus. One moment Audrey was terrified of leaving the house and the next she was kissing Linus. I don`t suffer from anxiety, but I don`t think that`s how things work, even when you are fourteen. For instance, when I was reading The Spinster Trilogy by Holly Bourne I liked how slowly things between Evie (suffering from OCD) and Ollie (anxiety) progressed. It sent a message: before getting in a relationship, you need to get better. In this book, however, the romance felt rushed and forced.

I wish I could say more good things about this book, but that`s not the case. It deals with a serious topic in a light and heart-warming way, but there are too many tropes. Still, if you can get past that, "Finding Audrey" is an easy read, perfect for a chilled afternoon. I gave it 3 stars on Goodreads, but many people seem to love it, so maybe other readers will enjoy it more than I did.

1 comment

  1. that's disappointing, especially as I LOVE sophie's work. I'd still give it a read
    Pam xo/ Pam Scalfi♥